Joyce Meyer 26th Annual Women’s Conference

Last Thursday afternoon, me and The GodSister packed up The Pony took off for St. Louis, and had a really incredible time! I was hoping that the same interpreter (one of my friend calls them the finger peoples, *chuckling*) as last year would be there this year, and as soon as I walked into the Dome, I started looking for her. And then, ta daaa! there she was! When you walk through life saying “Say it again?” a lot, and missing out on water-cooler conversation, and guessing and hoping that you’re responding to dialogue correctly, I cannot express how much of a joy it is to go to a conference and understand every single thing that is said. And she is the most expressive interpreter I have ever seen! When the Marines came out with the Flag and they did The Star-Spangled Banner, the interpretation she gave was so beautiful, it brought tears to my eyes. Before they started the song I thought, I should take video of this, but then I thought, nah, that might be rude, so I didn’t. Dang it.

I was very pleasantly surprised by how far my receptivity has come. Last year I mostly watched the screen above to speechread, then when I missed something, I’d just look down at the interpreter, catch up, and go back up to the screen. This year, I started doing that, but I’ve lost so much hearing over the last year, that didn’t work so hot. I ended up just watching the interpreter about 95% of the time and was very pleased that I understood almost every single thing she “said.” I just wish my signing was quicker. But I suppose since I only started learning ASL in fall ’06, I’m coming along fine.

Joyce is releasing a new book in Spring ’09 called Never Give Up! and she offered it there early for the women at the conference and then it will not be available again until it’s released next spring. I got the set with the book, the devotional, the workbook, a journal, 4 DVDs, 4 CDs, a CD full of ready-to-load iPod/Zune/mp3 player, and a bracelet to wear every day that reminds you to Never Give Up! and I’m really looking forward to getting into it.

The conference was over around 4pm on Saturday, and initially we had planned to relax and stay one more night and leave Sunday morning. But we decided to surprise our husbands and come home early. Oh, man, how I messed with Tom! We were texting back and forth and it was getting a little, um, warm. At one point he said You better come home I think and I said I can’t because the driver has already crashed and burned, she’s all the way out. He said, throw her in the back seat and get on the road, and I said, um, yeah, I can’t drive a stick. I was teasing him SO bad. Then we pulled up to my house with the car’s lights off. I knocked on the side door, and I wish I had a picture of his face! His jaw literally dropped, and he was speechless for a good five seconds (which, if you know Hunky, that’s a lot) and said, “What are you doing here?!” It was so funny!

Well, now it’s time to tell the feed reader peoples to click over, because there’s pictures. In the lower right hand corner of the pictures, you’ll see a link that says Notes. Hover on that to see the comments I added.

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Fantastic conference! Joyce Meyer is my favorite preacher, and I learned a lot and brought home some great teaching sets. There was about 28,000 women there this year, and that is a huge amount of people to handle well. But it was set up great, and in packed quarters with people bumping into each other and getting seats, well, sometimes it’s just not pretty, especially when you have 28,000 women of whom at least a quarter of which are seriously PMSy. Girls, you know what I’m talking about. When we’re cranky, we definitely have the capacity to be exceptionally catty and bitchy. But everyone I came across was very nice, lots of oops excuse me and sorry about that and that sort of thing. I would encourage anyone who wants some really amazing teaching and a big ‘God rawks!’ girlfriend party to go with me next year. It would be a great place to meet some of my Innernets girlfriends!

Rip it, roll it, and punch it, dude. Watch out; the forecast says to expect at least an inch of confetti.

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